Can you hate because of your religion? I am sure you can, but are you allowed to express that hate with speech and action? We're learning in the United States that many state governments think it is okay not to serve others based on their LGBT-ness. They enact laws stating helping may go against their religion, but many of us see that as hatred. We all agree that not serving is different than threatening physical harm to others. So can you make bold death threats against another person or group and have them overlooked because of your religious beliefs? Here's a recent issue from the Netherlands.
According to Dutch media, advisors from the anti-discrimination bureau MiND said that, while homophobic abuse was usually a crime, it was justifiable if you were Muslim due to laws on freedom of religious expression.
They argued that the Koran says it is acceptable to kill people for being homosexual, and so death threats towards gay people from Muslims could not be discriminatory.
In a jaw-dropping email explaining why they could not take up the complaint, they wrote: “The remarks must be seen in the context of religious beliefs in Islam, which juridically takes away the insulting character." – express.co.uk
For more on where the message appeared and why people dismissed the threats to begin with, head over to express.co.uk.
The turmoil in the Netherlands is not just about what one group can say about another due to free speech, religion, or whatever, but it's also about some feeling a certain group does not belong.
Far-right politician Geert Wilders, whose party is expected to win next spring’s general election, is currently on trial for inciting racial hatred after telling a rally there were “too many Moroccans” in the Netherlands.
Xenophobe much? But he clearly has support from others. Some citizens that agree with shutting the borders down may do because of overcrowding, while others are specifically not desiring more Muslims in their nation.
But it does look like the MiND is not lost and has learned from its recent mistake.
A spokesman for the MiND hotline admitted that after “further research” of the issue it had concluded that the complaint had been “unjustly assessed”.
He added that when the complaint involved calling for violence against a particular group, the beliefs of the person making the threats should not matter. – express.co.uk
Will Geert Wilders use this as fodder to push his agenda?
Will he embrace the LGBT community in order to keep another out?
Those in the Netherlands … what else should we know about this issue?